The longest-tenured employee in Gig Harbor’s history will call it a career March 31.
Gig Harbor Police Lt. Bill Colberg was honored Monday night during the city council meting for his more than three decades of service to the Maritime City.
Colberg started his law-enforcement career on Aug. 31, 1970, with the Glendale Police Department in California following four years with the U.S. Air Force as a military police officer, including an 18-month stint in Vietnam.
After 11 years and a promotion to sergeant at Glendale PD, Colberg moved north to Gig Harbor to raise his family. He joined the Gig Harbor Police Department on Dec. 7, 1981, and he’s served as second-in-command for nearly the last quarter-century.
He wouldn’t have it any other way.
Police Chief Mike Davis spoke publicly Monday and told those in attendance that Colberg isn’t comfortable in the spotlight and eschewed public recognition.
“This is quite a milestone, not just in his career, but in Gig Harbor’s,” Davis said, noting that Colberg has been acting chief three times during his tenure with the Gig Harbor Police Department but never sought the position on a permanent basis.
Davis also had a little fun with Colberg’s sometimes-gruff demeanor.
“He might not have a big smile on his face, but he’s smiling on the inside — at least that’s what he tells us,” Davis said.
Mayor Pro Tem Paul Kadzik presented Colberg with a plaque to commemorate the lieutenant’s 32 years of service. Mayor Chuck Hunter was not in attendance.
City Administrator Denny Richards, a former Gig Harbor police chief who was responsible for promoting Colberg to sergeant and lieutenant, presented his past and present coworker with a money clip with Colberg’s name on the front and an inscription on the back.
In other business, the city council passed two ordinances to deal with interim regulations regarding compliance under the Endangered Species Act.
For Gig Harbor to maintain its eligibility in the National Flood Insurance Program, the city must comply with one of three options: adopt the Federal Emergency Management Act-developed ESA, meet the FEMA checklist for ESA compliance with current regulations, or do a permit-by-permit method.
The current interim measure approved by the council Sept. 24 is set to expire March 23.
Citing concerns about the possible future merit of the second option and the city’s updated Shoreline Master Program, staff members added language to the ordinance to address that option once the SMP has been adopted and becomes effective.
The council passed the ordinance 5-2, with council members Ken Malich and Michael Perrow dissenting. A 7-0 vote saw the council approve an extension of the interim ordinance and adopt the permit-by-permit method.
The council also held a public hearing on the extension of interim regulations regarding medical cannabis collective gardens.
In November, voters approved Initiative 502, which provided for the limited legalization of marijuana under state law. In order to charge cases under the new law, the city is required to adopt by reference the laws codified in chapter 69.50 of the Revised Code of Washington. The ordinance also will update several references currently in the city’s municipal code in order to be consist with state law.
The ordinance likely will be adopted after a second reading.
Council members considered an ordinance changing the words “license” and “licensee” to “permit” and “permittee,” reflecting the trend for licenses to be issued by the state and permits to be issued by local jurisdictions.
The change was sparked by the council’s Jan. 28 adoption of an ordinance that repealed Chapter 5.16 of the city’s municipal code that had to do with temporary businesses.
The council unanimously authorized Hunter to execute a small public works contract with Pump Tech, Inc., in an amount of no more than $4,112.15 to repair the city’s Well No. 5.
The council also unanimously approved authorizing Hunter to begin the process of hiring a full-time building inspector to keep up with the increased demand of permitting.
Reporter Brett Davis can be reached at 253-358-4151 or by email at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter, @gateway_brett.